Localized and sustained delivery of the therapeutic genes using a solid carrier matrix is a potential approach to develop highly curative treatments. Electrospun nanofiber mesh of biodegradable polymer has been applied extensively as a carrier for localized and sustained delivery of drugs, proteins, and DNA, but it remains difficult to release sufficient amounts of DNA while maintaining structural and functional integrity. To realize the stable sustained release of the healthy plasmid DNA (pDNA) from electrospun fiber mesh, a novel method was examined for loading pDNA into the fibers based on solid-in-oil (S/O) nanodispersion of pDNA in organic solvent for electrospinning polymer solution: S/O nanodispersion electrospinning. A prepared pDNA-loaded fiber mesh made of biodegradable polymer showed sustained release of pDNA without burst release. From luciferase activity-based in vitro transcription-translation assay, pDNA released from meshes of the S/O nanodispersion retained about 60% luciferase activity of control pDNA, whereas pDNA released from the meshes of simple mixing showed only about 5% activity, indicating that S/O nanodispersion electrospinning is effective for loading pDNA into electrospun fiber meshes while maintaining their healthy functions. Effectiveness of S/O nanodispersion electrospinning was verified for fabricating a sustained release carrier matrix for high molecular weight bioactives, including therapeutic genes.
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